Brian's Song (1970) - Rotten Tomatoes

Brian's Song (1970)




Critic Consensus: Buoyed by standout performances from James Caan and Billy Dee Williams, Brian's Song is a touching tale of friendship whose central relationship transcends its standard sports movie moments.

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Movie Info

This football film draws on the memoirs of Chicago Bears' Gale Sayers to depict his friendship with fellow player Brian Piccolo, who lost his life to cancer after a valiant struggle.

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Billy Dee Williams
as Gale Sayers
James Caan
as Brian Piccolo
Judy Pace
as Linda
Ji-Tu Cumbuka
as Roommate
Jim Boeke
as Veteran Player
Doreen Lang
as Nurse 1
Allen Secher
as Hotel Man
Stu Nahan
as Speaker
Mario Machado
as 1st Reporter
Jack Daniel Wells
as Toastmaster
Dick Butkus
as Himself
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News & Interviews for Brian's Song

Critic Reviews for Brian's Song

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (2)

On its own, somewhat obvious level, Brian's Song worked. Not least in its favor were two exceptionally fine performances: James Caan as Brian Piccolo and Billy Dee Williams as Gale Sayers.

August 31, 2016 | Full Review…

Made-for-TV eyewash for disheartened Bears fans to drown their sorrows in.

January 25, 2008 | Full Review…

Weepy story of interracial pro football teammates.

December 22, 2010 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

The film's emotions are obvious and blunt, but they get the job done.

January 25, 2008

It remains the best example of the most different of men competing fairly and getting along peacefully ever filmed.

December 6, 2005 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Brian's Song

Good film. Great character portrayals by James Caan and Billy Dee Williams. The chemistry and camaraderie between the two is what makes this film so great. Brian's Song is worth seeing, even if you're not a fan of football.

Stephen Skudlarek
Stephen Skudlarek

Super Reviewer

Oh, How Melo-Drama was enjoyable in the 70's! Now a days, You can't even last a minute with a movie like that. In Brian's song Case, I lasted the whole film, enjoying moderate parts of it. Also, no matter How much, i love football, i do not shed tears, only Old Yeller, can get that close.

Joseph Eastmond
Joseph Eastmond

Super Reviewer


If you thought this was a bit sappy in 1970 you should watch it again. The thing practically oozes with overt sentimentality. Still, it's an indelible childhood memory for men of my generation and an almost iconic piece of '70s Americana. ...and yes, it still makes me cry (dammit).

Randy Tippy
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

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